The purpose was to create a patient-education brochure on antibiotic resistance and to disseminate and elicit provider feedback on the brochure. The project offered the opportunity for healthcare providers to utilize self reflection to assess their knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, perceived social norms, and perceived barriers to practicing prudent use of antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance is one of the most important public health concerns (American Academy of Microbiology, 2009; CDC, 2009a, 2009b; Friedman & Whitney, 2008). Healthcare providers continue to frequently prescribe antibiotics for viral infections for which evidence-based guidelines lack support of efficacy (Bartlett, 2010; Gjelstad, Dalen, & Lindbaek, 2009; Goossens, Ferech, Coenen, Stephen, & the European Surveillance of Antimicrobial Consumption Project Group, 2007; Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement [ICSI], 2011; Ladd, 2005). It is vitally important for all healthcare providers to recognize and understand the risks presented by antibiotic resistance. The most effective strategy to coexist with, decrease the spread of, and prevent the development of new forms of antibiotic-resistant microorganisms is to utilize prudent antibiotic prescribing (American Academy of Microbiology, 2009; CDC, 2010b, 2010c). The clinical dissertation project identified that 83% of participants have the desire to practice prudent antibiotic use.
An important component of prudent antibiotic prescribing is to effectively educate patients. As part of the project, a patient-education brochure about the importance of prudent antibiotic use was created. The author created the brochure using evidence-based guidelines (American College of Chest Physicians [ACCP], 2006; CDC, 2010b, 2010c; ICSI, 2011). The brochure included an explanation of antibiotic resistance; common myths and realities; evidence-based, non-pharmacological methods to boost the natural immune response; and a list of important evidence-based, non-antibiotic pharmacological options for symptom management (Alliance for the Prudent Use of Antibiotics [APUA], 2006; Arroll, 2005; CDC, 2010b, 2010c; Heimer, Hart, Martin, & Rubio-Wallace, 2009; Veverka, Wilson, Martinez, Wenger, & Tamosuinas, 2009). The usefulness of the brochure was assessed by distribution to family-practice providers and elicitation of feedback. Eighty-three percent (83%) of the participants responded the patient brochure would be helpful and they would use the brochure in their practice. Suggestions for further research were also offered.